AMPERAGE Marketing & Fundraising

BlogWhen Is a Capital Campaign Needed?

Subscribe to AMPERAGE Marketing & Fundraising

Catherine McAuley Center capital campaign planning success reveal.

When Is a Capital Campaign Needed?

Catherine McAuley Center capital campaign reveal

As nonprofits adjust to new community demands, increased needs for services and how programs are delivered, an organization may question if it should conduct a capital campaign to raise the necessary funds to meet new objectives.

DonorSearch defines a capital campaign as a targeted fundraising effort that takes place over a defined period of time. Capital campaigns aim to raise money outside of an organization’s annual or operating fund to finance a new facility or building renovation, implement a new program or service line, purchase equipment, increase a nonprofit’s infrastructure and/or augment an organization’s endowment to ensure future sustainability.

Capital campaigns are conducted to raise funds for a one-time need or purpose for a nonprofit and takes the dedication of staff, board members and volunteers. The Giving Institute recommends that a nonprofit should plan for a capital campaign to last three to five years. This includes from the initial project planning and conducting a feasibility study through cultivating donors and soliciting prospects and finally to campaign evaluation.

Although a capital campaign is an investment of time and resources for an organization, it is also beneficial to the future of the nonprofit.

These benefits include:

  • Increased community awareness
  • Amplified involvement of volunteers
  • Greater engagement with donors
  • Enhanced development office operations

AMPERAGE Marketing & Fundraising has consulted on over 80 capital campaigns throughout the Midwest, and our fundraising consultants each have more than 20 years’ fundraising experience working with nonprofit organizations. If you have questions or would like to explore the timing of a capital campaign for your organization, download our fundraising brochure or contact Jennifer Rubel, director of fundraising, at or 319-268-9151.

Written by:

Melissa provides fundraising counsel for AMPERAGE’s nonprofit clients, leading feasibility studies and providing solutions that drive successful fundraising campaign results. A Certified Fund Raising Executive (CFRE), she uses her experience and extensive skill set to continually advance her fundraising practices and develop campaign-specific strategies, materials and training to help clients reach their campaign goals and advance their mission. Melissa has vast experience working in the nonprofit sector, having served in development and leadership roles with Sisters of Mercy and the Alzheimer’s Association. In addition, she has served as a volunteer and board member with local nonprofits, such as the Catherine McAuley Center. Faith-based organizations and causes are of particular interest to Melissa. Melissa moves the needle by always looking for new opportunities and ways to improve professionally. She is currently president of the Eastern Iowa Planned Giving Council and a past president of the Association of Fundraising Professionals-Eastern Iowa Chapter. Melissa holds a Master of Strategic Leadership degree from Mount Mercy University. This busy professional, wife and mother enjoys sports and live music in her free time. A fan of Cubs baseball and Iowa Hawkeye football, Melissa and family enjoy football tailgating, where she’s known for her breakfast burritos. She enjoys the local band scene but says a Foo Fighters concert is her all-time favorite.